3 cylinder engine vs four cylinder engine: Which is better?

Question of the day: Is a 4-cylinder engine better than a 3-cylinder engine?

Abhinav Chauhan has a question for the CarToq community: Which is better –  a 3-cylinder or a 4-cylinder engine…?

question of the day

This is a discussion we hear about often – there are people who insist that four cylinders are better than three cylinders for cars. We are used to 3-cylinder cars in India. Cars like the Alto have been popular in India for a long time, and even now some small cars like the Alto and premium hatchbacks like the Volkswagen Polo come with 3-cylinder engines.

The common belief is that a 4-cylinder car is smoother than a 3-cylinder car. But this is not always an accurate statement. The Volkswagen Polo petrol is generally considered a high quality car. The 3-cylinder K series engine of the Maruti A-Star is also supposed to be quite smooth.

Then there is also the important question of mileage. Which type of engine offers better fuel efficiency?

This seems to be a case where your experiences can help the community learn a lot.

How well does the engine of your three-cylinder or four-cylinder car perform? Do you own a 3-cylinder car and prefer it over a 4-cylinder car, or is it that you own a four-cylinder car and find it much better than 3-cylinder cars you have driven? Do tell us your experiences and views in the comments.